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David F. Winkler

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David F. Winkler, a resident of Alexandria, Virginia, is the Historian and Director of Programs and Development with the Naval Historical Foundation in Washington, D.C. A specialist on the Cold War, he has published several historical context studies for the Department of Defense that examine the U.S. military infrastructure and has contributed articles to leading naval magazines and journals. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from Penn State, a Master’s Degree in International Affairs from Washington University, and a Ph.D. in History from American University. A surface warfare officer and Naval War College graduate, Winkler served on active duty for ten years and is currently a Commander in the Naval Reserve.

 

David F. Winkler is the author of Amirs, Admirals, and Desert Sailors: Bahrain, the U.S. Navy, and the Arabian Gulf and Cold War at Sea: High-Seas Confrontation Between the United States and the Soviet Union.

 

According to the book description of Amirs, Admirals, and Desert Sailors: Bahrain, the U.S. Navy, and the Arabian Gulf, “Host to the U.S. Navy for nearly six decades, Bahrain has been a steadfast American ally in the turbulent Middle East. Its unique relationship with the United States evolved through a series of friendships between Bahrain s ruling Al Khalifa royal family and top U.S. Navy flag officers assigned to the fleet in the Gulf. Over the years it has become a strategic partnership critical to global security.

 

As naval historian David F. Winkler examines these developing relationships, he offers a fascinating overview of Bahraini history, the entry of American humanitarian and economic interests, the establishment of an American naval presence in the Cold War, the Arab-Israeli conflicts, and the downfall of the Iranian shah, among other subjects. The author tells the story from both Bahraini and American perspectives.

 

Given U.S. commitment to the region and its concurrent objectives of combating the global war on terrorism and establishing democracy, this book provides an important historical context for those interested in a crucial facet of American foreign relations. While many works describe the history of U.S. diplomatic and military involvement in the Gulf, this is the first to cover in depth the history of the U.S. Navy in Bahrain.”


Cold War at Sea: High-Seas Confrontation Between the United States and the Soviet Union
David F. Winkler  More Info

Amirs, Admirals, and Desert Sailors: Bahrain, the U.S. Navy, and the Arabian Gulf
David F. Winkler  More Info

According to the book description of Cold War at Sea: High-Seas Confrontation Between the United States and the Soviet Union, “Free to patrol the skies and surface of the high seas under international law, U.S. and Soviet naval and air forces made daily direct contact during the Cold War. Often confrontational and occasionally violent, air-to-air contacts alone killed over one hundred Soviet and American aviators during the Truman and Eisenhower years. Diplomacy to curtail the hostility produced mixed results. In the 1960s the Soviet Navy challenged worldwide U.S. naval dominance, and collisions and charges of harassment became common.

 

In 1972 the two nations signed an Incidents at Sea Agreement (INCSEA) that established navy-to-navy channels to resolve issues. This agreement is the focus of David Winkler's study. He argues that in contrast to conventional diplomatic channels, Soviet and American naval officers, sharing bonds inherent in seamen, could put ideology aside and speak frankly. Working together, they limited incidents that could have had unfortunate consequences. Drawing on previously unavailable State Department files and recently declassified papers held at the Naval Historical Center as well as discussions with former top naval officials, diplomats, and others, Winkler details U.S.-Soviet incidents at sea, analyzes the changes in U.S. policy and naval strategy, and evaluates the effects of various events on U.S.-Soviet maritime relations, helping readers to fully appreciate the agreement's significance in establishing a direct military-to-military contact and as a venue to discuss other issues during the 1970s and 1980s.”

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